Thursday, 28 November 2013

Capsicums stuffed with Vegetables - My Unique Creation

Capsicums filled with Vegetables

Perfect Vegetarian Fare for Spring

Firstly I chopped up vegetables, and fried them in olive oil until just cooked.

Then I halved 2 freshly picked green capsicums, removing the membrane and seeds.
Placing the capsicum halves into a foil lined and olive oil sprayed tray,
they were then filled with the cooked vegetable mixture.

Mozzarella was grated over the top and I placed the tray into a pre heated oven
180 Celcius and cooked for about 25 minutes, 
until the capsicums were soft and the cheese was melted. 

What a delightful vegetable accompaniment, or served as a tasty entrée.

Vegetable Filled Capsicums

1 eggplant, cut into 1cm cubes
1 potato, peeled and chopped into 1cm cubes
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
1 zucchini, cut into 2cm cubes
1 onion, sliced finely
1 garlic clove, finely chopped

1 tablespoon salted capers, rinsed
3/4 cup Passata, (or 3 tomatoes, chopped)
Handful parsley, chopped
1 pinch dried oregano
1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
6 green capsicum, halved and with membrane removed.
1/4 cup olive oil
olive oil spray

Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius.

Heat up a large frying pan, pour in the 1/4 cup olive oil, add eggplant and fry for 2 mins per side over a medium high heat.  Add potato, celery, zucchini and onion, turn down to a medium heat and stir occasionally , cooking for 8 minutes. 

 Add the garlic, capers and chopped tomatoes. Cook another 3 minutes. 

Ad the herbs, salt and pepper, tossing through the vegetable mixture. 

Line a baking tray with foil.  Spray lightly with olive oil and place the prepared capsicums, cut side up in the tray. 

Put the vegetables into the capsicums, piling them high as they will shrink when baked.
Top with mozzarella, spray with a little olive oil and bake for 25 - 30 mins until the cheese is melted.

I  would love to hear how you bake capsicums.           Buon appetito, Merryn

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Modern Passata Method - bottling tomato puree easily

Spring time is the time to harvest your Roma Tomatoes for making Passata.


There is something primeval about gathering and preserving your

tomato crop for the cooler months.

I look forward to Spring's first crop so I can enjoy bottling
these gorgeous tomatoes for Passata to last a year.

Vibrant, juicy tomatoes bursting with nature's goodness.
 Being a busy woman with limited time it seemed sensible
to discard the trusty moulee for a more modern method of preserving tomato sauce.
Out came the JUICER, in went the washed, whole tomatoes.
The tomato juice was captured and the pulp was discarded.
I poured this lovely essential tomato juice into a big saucepan.
Bringing this tomato juice to a boil, I reduced the pan to a high simmer.
Leaving the lid off this mixture, it was simmered for about two hours.
After two hours the mixture had reduced considerably.
Take off the heat and allow to cool to a warm temperature.
The clean bottles were sterilised by placing in an oven at 150 degrees celsius for 20 minutes.
The lids were placed and left in a bowl of boiling water for 20 minutes.
Let cool until touchable.
Then the tomato mixture was poured into a jug to ensure ease
of filling up the sterilised bottles.
Wrap each bottle in a cloth rag then place horizontally into a large saucepan.
It is okay to place bottles next to and on top of each other
as long as they are surrounded by rags.
Pour warm water over the encased bottles, making sure they are totally covered by water.

Bring to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes with the lid on.
Then turn off the heat and leave undisturbed until
the bottles are cool enough to handle (I leave them overnight).
Remove from the water bath and store for many wonderful tomato based meals.
Buon appetito, try this easy passata method, Merryn.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Merryn's post Spring Garden

This is definitely one of the best times of the year for growing and reaping your wonderful garden produce.

Broccoli in abundance ....

Some beautiful snow peas, bouncing with beauty and vitality.

These young cos lettuce, coral lettuce, rocket and shallots are so close to picking. 
 They have been in the soil for about 1 month. 
At this stage, you can pick the outer leaves, allowing the lettuce to continue to grow
and likewise pick the young shallots as they have enough flavour to enjoy.
Our broad beans are  producing very well.  We have been picking them for 6 weeks now. 
The papaya have been amazing!  I love this fruit. 
Served sliced with a little lime juice over the top it is unsurpassed in flavour. 
I love it green and finely shredded for a salad, but equally enjoyable,
ripe and served with the acidic accompaniment of lime or lemon juice. 
This is amazing!

Young peaches growing on the tree, soon to be succulent, and juicy.
Asparagus happily peeping through the ground. 
This such a gorgeous vegetable, give it a dedicated bed and watch it prosper and grow.
Beautiful cabbage wholesome and full, cut it in half and give your neighbours their fill!
We have had such a wonderful October harvest and are looking forward to the peaches,
 nectarines and quinces that will be coming to fruition in November.
Not to mention delicious sun ripened tomatoes.
Mouth watering vegetables.
Happy gardening! Buon appetito! Merryn